16 September 2009


Call for applications for the world book capital nomination 2012

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October 2009 

The Selection Committee for the World Book Capital is calling for nominations for the World Book Capital 2012. The complete applications, duly substantiated, compulsorily including a cover or support letter from the mayor of the candidate-city and drafted in one of UNESCO’s official languages (French, English, Spanish, Russian, Arabic or Chinese), should reach UNESCO no later than Wednesday 31 March 2010 (Paris Time).  No application received after this date will be taken into consideration.

The applications shall contain maximum 25 pages in A4 format and should be transmitted by the post to the UNESCO contact below (in 5 original copies) or by e mail in pdf format, to the address wbcc@unesco.org.

The applications will provide a contact person (name, title, postal address, telephone and e mail) responsible for the correspondence between the City and the Committee before the selection and after the nomination.

In sending their applications, the candidate cities grant UNESCO and the other members of the Selection the right to circulate and publish the applications on line for information purposes.

The candidate programmes shall be aimed at promoting books and fostering reading during the period between one World Book and Copyright Day and the next (23 April).

To involve all regions1 of the world in turn, the Selection Committee will avoid the consecutive nomination of cities from the same region. Since the 2011 title was awarded to a city of the Latin America and the Caribbean region (Buenos Aires), no candidature from this region will be taken into consideration for the 2012 nomination.

The applicants' programme proposals will be examined in the light of the following six criteria:

    1. the submission of an activity programme specifically conceived for the World Book Capital City programme and implemented during the city's term as Capital City.
    2. a general outline of expenses planned and a strategy to identify possible financial resources
    3. the degree of municipal, regional, national and international involvement, including professional and non-government organizations, and the impact of the programmes.
    4. the quantity and quality of one-time or ongoing activities organized by the applicant city in collaboration with national and international professional organizations representing writers, publishers, booksellers and librarians and in full respect of the various players in the book supply chain and in the scientific and literary community.
    5. the quantity and quality of any other noteworthy projects promoting and fostering books and reading.
    6. the conformity with the principles of freedom of expression, freedom to publish and to distribute information, as stated in the UNESCO Constitution as well as by Articles 19 and 27 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and by the Agreement on the Importation of Educational, Scientific and Cultural Materials (Florence Agreement).

      By presenting its application each candidate city commits itself, in case of nomination, to:

      • Associate UNESCO and the three professional associations represented in the Selection Committee, in its communication and information campaign namely by displaying their respective logos, at all levels  on all publications and on the web site dedicated to the initiative);
      • Provide UNESCO, which will share it with all members of the Selection Committee, with:
        • An interim report on the activities implemented during the first part of nomination year (23 April 2012-October 2012);
        • A final report on the activities implemented during the whole nomination year (23 April 2012-22 April 2013);
      • Systematically invite UNESCO and the three professional associations represented in the Selection Committee to all main events relating the World Book Capital City programme;
      • Produce and circulate information and communication tools on the City programme both in national and international languages.

        Besides, the City authorities commit themselves to facilitate possible evaluation audits implemented on UNESCO’s demand.

        The Selection Committee – operating under the auspices of UNESCO – is made up of one representative of the International Publishers Association (IPA), one representative of the International Booksellers’ Federation (IBF), one representative of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) and one UNESCO representative, under the chairmanship of the President of IPA. The Committee’s task is to choose a World Book Capital each year, in accordance with 31 C/Resolution 29, adopted by the UNESCO General Conference on 2 November 2001. The first World Book Capital chosen prior to the adoption of 31 C/Resolution 29 was Madrid, in 2001. Subsequent World Book Capital Cities have been Alexandria (2002), New Delhi (2003), and Antwerp (2004).  Montreal was the World Book Capital City in 2005, succeeded by Turin (2006), Bogotá (2007), Amsterdam (2008), Beirut (2009), Ljubljana (2010) and Buenos Aires (2011).


        Mr Mauro Rosi
        Division of Arts and Cultural Enterprise
        1, rue Miollis
        F-75732 Paris Cedex 15
        Tel.: +33 1 45 68 46 33
        Fax: +33 1 45 68 55 95
        Email: m.rosi@unesco.org

        1According to its own criteria based on operational needs, UNESCO distinguishes five regions: Africa, Arab States, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and North America, and Latin America and the Caribbean (see ANNEX).

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